Arizona is the most recent state to ban cages for chickens. It has joined the growing list of states to adopt such measures. However, this only applies to egg-laying chickens. Moreover, these cages are referred to as battery cages. Therefore, the chickens will be able to roam free of these battery cages in their enclosure. Arizona will be the 10th US state to go cage free. It will join many other states such as Oregon, California, Washington and Michigan.
The HB 2724 bill seeks to impose the cage ban. The bill requires all hens to be placed in an environment where they should be provided with ‘enrichments’. Moreover, these enrichments have to allow the hens to exhibit “natural behaviors.” These enrichments will be provided in the form of scratch areas, perches, nest boxes and even bathing areas. Thankfully, these are only the minimum measures.
The bill will only be implemented if it signed into becoming a full-fledge law. The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) estimates that seven million chickens will be saved from this legislation. The HSUS further claims they “will never know the pain and suffering of being confined in a tiny cage” according to the Animal Rescue Site.
The bill is also subject to much debate. Joyce Tischler questions how far the improvements will go. She says the improvements will be depend on those raising the chickens. She wishes more would be done in favor of the bird. Joyce still notes the hens will be exposed to “putrid” air. Moreover, she says the chickens should roam even free from the enclosure of warehouse. Joyce Tischler is the co-founder of Animal Legal Defense Fund.
The United States of America is the world’s largest poultry producer. Additionally, it is the second largest exporter of poultry. Poultry consumption is much larger than beef or pork in the country. Currently, bird flu poses a massive threat in North America. Given the harshness of this disease, extreme caution is advised.